8 Of The Best Cafe Furniture Tips and Ideas

Cafe furniture is arguably one of your most important considerations because:

  1. It sets the tone of your cafe

  2. It plays an important role in determining the ‘flow’ of your customers and your staff

  3. If your furniture is uncomfortable customers will not come back

We’ve put together some ideas to help you decide what kind of cafe furniture you need and where to put it.

Do not cram your customers in

If there’s one thing we learned simply from visiting numerous cafes, no-one likes to feel hemmed in. It can be tempting to squeeze another couple of tables in so you can cater for more people but it’s a big mistake to do so. Tables that are too close together make it difficult for waiting staff to move freely between tables and it also makes customers feel that everything they’re saying can be overheard.

Consider a communal table or booths

This leads on from the point above. If you’re looking to maximise your floor space then installing booths or using one or more communal tables could be a solution. Booths take up less space than tables and chairs and give your customers a feeling of privacy. Communal tables work really well alongside private tables for 2 and 4 people. They offer variety and options for your customers whether it be a solo diner, small group, or large party. Millennials in particular love the social buzz that’s created by communal seating.

Adding a carpet or rug gives a homely feel

Modern-day cafes can be extremely noisy places owing to their hard, reflective surfaces. If you have a communal table then why not place a rug beneath it to ‘centre’ it in the room and reduce your noise levels?

Avoid straight rows of furniture

Mixing up your tables and chairs makes for interesting seating arrangements and is more pleasing to the eye. You can also change the look and feel of your cafe by changing your furniture around periodically. Straight rows of tables and chairs, on the other hand, feel more like a prison visiting room and really isn’t very appealing.

Your furniture doesn’t all have to match

Unlike the coffee and restaurant chains, there is no need to fill your interior with matching furniture. Indeed, utilising a mix of styles and colours will give your cafe more personality, and a natural, homely feel. Be careful, however, to ensure that your colours complement each other and don’t clash as this could give your customers a headache:-)

Always buy commercial furniture

It can be tempting to choose domestic furniture as in most cases it’s cheaper. However, this is false economy since it won’t be as durable or long-lasting as commercial furniture which has passed a series of extensive tests to make sure that it’s fit for purpose.

Use any space outside your cafe

If your cafe has pavement space at the front then take advantage of it to advertise your brand and tempt passers-by. People love nothing better than sitting outside watching the world go by and the sight of a few customers sitting enjoying themselves will soon encourage others to join them.

Have fun

Above all have fun when decorating your cafe and don’t be afraid to let your personality shine through. A cafe that has been lovingly furnished and is full of character will stand out from others in the crowd.

At Cafe Furniture Brisbane we stock a wide range of cafe furniture from traditional to contemporary and in a variety of styles, materials, and colours. Why not visit our showroom to see for yourself or browse our online store?

How to Get Your Cafe Ready For Summer

Well, Spring has finally arrived and we’re well on the way to Summer. This can be a difficult time for cafes with only limited outdoor seating, or none at all, as most customers enjoy sitting outside taking in the sunshine, which can leave empty cafes all over Brisbane.

So the question is how can you still attract customers to your cafe despite the sun? We’ve put together a few tips to get your cafe ready for the summer by tweaking your menu in order to maximise your profits.

Summer drinks

Milkshakes and frappes are massively in demand in the summer months but do require a commercial blender to get those lush frothy results. Frappe mix can be a little expensive if you don’t offer them as standard so it may be a better option to serve a variety of milkshakes instead. Roband milkshakes mixers are one of the best on the market for giving perfect results every time.

Other drink options include:

Iced coffee

These can be created quite simply by pouring espresso and cold milk over ice or you can go to town and add a scoop of ice cream which can be blended like a milkshake before pouring over the ice. You can also ring the changes with coffee syrups and different flavours of ice creams, eliminating the need for any expensive mixes. What’s more you can charge more for these than your normal lattes, meaning that they’re good for your bottom line.

Fruit smoothies

These delicious drinks are really popular and healthy too and can be made in a variety of ways using fresh fruit, milk, yoghurts, oats, and ice. Whatever method you decide upon, make sure you promote their health benefits like crazy.

Iced Tea

Iced tea is refreshing and with a little imagination, you can play around with flavours, types of tea, and herbals which will have customers coming back for more. One way to make iced tea is with syrup, cold water and heaps of ice. However, you can also brew up multiple tea bags in a small amount of hot water and top with ice and water. It’s an extremely cost-effective drink to make and you can also charge more than for a regular cup of tea:)

Most importantly, be sure to offer all of your summer drinks in a takeaway form so that customers can enjoy them on the hop. By introducing some stylish summer crockery and new exciting flavours, your cafe will soon be heaving with summer customers.

Summer Snacks

Less is definitely more when it comes to summer snacks. Generally speaking, people don’t want heavy cakes at this time of the year especially if they’ve ordered a calorific milkshake. You might want to tweak your snacks and make your menu lighter with less chocolate which only melts anyway! Try and include a few unique offerings which other cafes don’t have on their menus.

Good quality ice cream desserts and sorbets will make your cafe a summer destination and help to increase the spend per head. Try swapping out the cakes in your cabinets for lighter products such as cheesecakes and flapjacks.

Finally, salads are a great thing to add to your menu but make sure they aren’t boring. Try using pasta, couscous, seeds, and exotic dressings and promote them as takeaway options too. Customers will be keen to purchase these and eat them in the park during their lunch break.

Hopefully, these tips have given you a few ideas for attracting new customers during the summer. Meanwhile, if you do have a terrace then now’s the time to jazz it up for the months ahead. We’re offering 10% off all our polypropylene chairs so there’s never been a better time to update your cafe furniture.

5 Things To Look For In Top Quality Cafe Furniture

While cafe furniture varies in style and size there are some universal features that you should look for and it’s these that you should focus your attention on to ensure that you’re making a good investment for your cafe. So with that in mind, let’s take a closer look.

Durability

All cafe and bistro furniture should be strong with a high assembly build. While this is important for any type of furniture, it’s even more important for cafe furniture which needs to be able to withstand all the daily rigours of a busy environment. To ensure your cafe furniture lasts for several years always buy commercial furniture which is intended for the hospitality industry and purchase from a reputable retailer.

Good quality

Another thing to bear in mind is the design of your cafe furniture. While you may serve the best coffee in town, if your furniture is looking old and battered, then customers are likely to go elsewhere. As well as replacing any worn out furniture make sure that your table and chair sets look up to date and inviting in their appearance.

Complements your interior

With so many designs it can be difficult to know which to choose and what would fit well into the interior of your cafe. The best advice we can give you in this respect is to focus first on what type of material you want your furniture to be made from. If for instance, your cafe has a traditional look about it with a classic unpretentious style, then we’d suggest you stick to wooden furniture or laminate. Classic styles like bentwood and ladderback work well together with timber table tops. If you’re trying to create a modern, light and airy ambience then consider Parisian chairs with stainless steel tabletops, which can be used indoor and outside to create a seamless flow from one area to another.

High quality and good finish

When shopping for wooden or MDF furniture make sure that it’s good quality and well finished. If you’re using it outside then ensure that it’s waterproof and UV resistant. Our Isotop table tops are a good alternative to solid timber since they’re constructed from an innovative material which combines plantation wood chip with resin and wax which are precisely moulded together and given a durable laminate surface which looks just like timber only it’s way more durable and effective for cafe use. Waterproof, UV resistant, and heat and stain resistant too, they’re suitable for indoor and outdoor use and can be wiped clean just with a damp cloth.

Affordable cost

While you shouldn’t compromise on the quality of your cafe furniture it doesn’t mean that you can’t look around for furniture with an affordable price tag. Online retailers typically offer a better selection of furniture together with cheaper prices and this is because they deal direct with the manufacturers and don’t have the high costs associated with a brick and mortar business.

Here at Cafe Furniture Brisbane, we stock a wide range of quality commercial cafe furniture to suit all tastes and budgets. You can browse our online store or better still why not visit our showroom in Brendale to try out the products for yourself?

Tips For Choosing The Right Cafe Table Tops

Since cafe tables take up the most space in your cafe and are one of the first things that customers see when they come through your doors it’s important to make the right choice. But how do you choose a cafe table? What should you be looking for? We’ve put together a quick guide to assist you when choosing new cafe table tops for your venue.

Size

It makes sense that before considering the material and colour of your table tops that you determine what size you’re looking for. Most ranges come in a variety of sizes which is always helpful if you want to mix and match sizes for different seating areas.

The size of top you choose depends on how much space you have to work with, the type of food that you’re serving, and the amount of customers you want to be able to cater for. For most cafes, a table size of 700 mm should be more than large enough although you might want to include some 600mm table for two sizes, to fill any awkward gaps or recesses.

Square or rectangular tables are usually the best choice because they can be pushed together to make larger tables for groups. Of course, if you have the space, you can always include a communal table for groups.

Materials

First of all, can we just say that besides choosing which material you want for your tabletops the most important thing is to only buy those that are intended for commercial use since domestic table tops will not withstand all the rigours of a bustling cafe.

Basically, there are two main choices for your tabletops – solid wood and particleboard surrounded with a melamine or laminate face. Don’t be concerned that the latter may not be sufficiently durable, because that is simply not the case. Our Isotop table tops, for example, are amongst the most durable cafe table tops that you’ll ever find and have the look of a wooden top at a fraction of the price.

Heat resistance

Do you really need tables that are heat resistant? When it comes to wooden table tops or laminate ones, while they can withstand warm plates, as a rule of thumb if the late is too hot to be held in your hands then it’s too hot to place straight onto your table tops. Wooden table tops may be hardwearing and durable but they will mark if you put something down on them that is too hot. If you don’t want to use tablecloths then we suggest that you use placemats on your table surfaces.

The exception to this is our Isotop table tops which are able to withstand plates straight from the oven and which can also withstand damage from smouldering cigarettes.

Maintenance

Another consideration is the cleaning of your table tops. If you have a high turnover then you want tables that can be quickly wiped clean in between customers with nothing more than a damp cloth and gentle cleansing spray. While this works well with laminate and Isotop table tops, the same can’t be said for wooden table tops which may require regular staining and varnish to help them avoid marks and stains from regular use.

If you’re in need of new cafe table tops then look no further than Cafe Furniture Brisbane. We stock a wide range of table tops in a variety of shapes, sizes, patterns and colours. Best of all, they’re currently discounted by 20% so you can save yourself some money too. Why not browse our online store or visit our showroom in Brendale to check them out for yourself?

Tips On Creating The Perfect Coffee Shop

Coffee just carries on getting more popular and doesn’t seem to be going anywhere soon. More and more coffee shops keep popping up in Brisbane all eager to have a slice of this ever-increasing market.

So how do you make your cafe stand out from the crowd?

Have a clear concept

A large part of getting customers through your doors is by making sure they know who you are and why you’re different from everyone else. Knowing what sort of coffee shop you want to be is important before opening your doors.

Are you going to be trendy? Shabby chic? Modern? Do you have a unique selling point that stands you out from the crowd, such as having ‘in house’ cats or being dog friendly? Perhaps you take inspiration from a country or era like the French culture or the Colonial Period? Are you going to be regimented in style like big chain names or adopt a more relaxed and casual approach? Making it clear from the outset what type of environment and atmosphere you’re providing is key to attracting customers.

Design and inspiration

Once you’ve decided on your concept you need to get the message across with your cafe design. Think about materials and colours. Are you going to have metal chairs or wooden ones, upholstered or with loose cushions? Shabby chic is still very popular and focuses in natural materials and painted surfaces.

Know what furniture you need

Once you know how you want your cafe to look and who you want to come in, it’s time to choose your furniture. It’s import that your seating matches the duration of stay. Big tables with plenty of room for food will encourage families and larger groups who’re looking for somewhere to linger for longer. It’s also a good idea to have a few stackable high chairs for families with younger children. A sofa and tub chairs are also great for people looking to catch up.

If your cafe is more about quick service and short visits then you won’t be needing big tables and comfy sofas. Instead you might want to install some dry bar tables for people to stand around with their drinks and some counters with stools beneath.

Layout

Finally, be careful not to cram in too much furniture. Understandably you want to cater for as many people as you can but if your customers and staff can’t walk freely in between tables, then your your tables are too close together and people will feel a lack of privacy. A combination of small and large tables will make sure you can serve a variety of customers and meet their needs.

Here at Cafe Furniture Brisbane you’ll find a wide variety of tables, chairs, and stools in varying materials and colours, so why not take a look and be inspired. If you need any more information about any of our products then just give us a call on (07) 3184 2371 and we’ll be pleased to assist.

Reasons to Complement Your Cafe’s Interior With Replica Furniture

Furniture does more than provide function. Because of its size and the space it takes up it influences the backdrop of your cafe and affects how other furniture and décor will look. This is the reason why it’s important that the furniture you buy for your cafe complements its interior in a flattering way. This isn’t always possible especially when you’ve got a particular style of furniture in mind and can’t find anything to suit. Replica furniture is a great alternative when you’re looking for a style which was once popular but perhaps doesn’t now exist. Let’s take a look at more reasons for buying replica furniture.

An original may be damaged

Tracking down older style furniture which has gone out of fashion can be difficult and time-consuming. Even if you do manage to find what you’re looking for it’s more than likely it will be displaying major signs of wear and tear such as cracks, missing screws, dents, and splinters. If it’s in tip top condition then it’s likely to be priced out of your budget.

Like for like (with a difference!)

Buying a replica piece, however, allows you to acquire a designer piece of furniture for practically the same price as a similar item in a furniture outlet store. What’s more modern day technologies and synthetic materials means that your new piece of furniture will look the same outwardly but be more durable. One example is the classic rattan chair. Typically made from bamboo in its early years of manufacture, it doesn’t stand up to the harsh Australian climate or to constant use. Modern-day alternatives are manufactured from nylon resins which boast the aesthetics of a wicker rattan chair but the difference being they are weather resistant, durable, and easily wiped clean with little more than a damp cloth.

Easy to source

You could spend years searching for a designer item of furniture but now it’s practically as easy as typing in a Google search and seeing what results come up. Replica furniture is big business and companies all over Australia are manufacturing replica chairs, sofas, lights, dressers, and goodness knows what else to satisfy our thirst for classic style and aesthetics.

Cheaper price

If you love designer classics and have had your eye on a particular item but are hesitant to buy because of the expensive price tag, then replica furniture could be the solution. It’s practically always cheaper than the original and just because it’s cheap doesn’t mean it’s inferior in any way. In fact, because of modern-day technologies, it’s likely to be more durable than the original – making for a win-win solution.

If you’re a fan of Tolix chairs you’re probably aware that they’re still manufactured today but were you to purchase one, then it’s likely to make a considerable dent in your wallet. And, were you to need say 30 to furnish your cafe, well you might need to take out a small mortgage!

Our replica chairs are manufactured in the same way as the original and feature the same style details too. With a wide choice of colours and styles to choose from, they allow you to embrace your love of designer without the expensive price tag. Furthermore, since we’re currently running a sale on our entire Tolix range, you can save yourself even more money. Go on….. what are you waiting for?

How To Make Your Cafe Stand Out From The Others

Us Aussies certainly love our coffee but with so many cafes opening in Brisbane, just how do you stand yours out from the others? We’ve put together a few tips to help.

Mix it up

Cafe goers are a discerning lot and when it comes to coffee they like to have a wide choice to choose from. Long gone are the days when a latte or expresso was something unique and exciting. Instead customers want a variety of coffee beans and alternatives to regular cow’s milk such as oat milk and hazelnut milk.

And what about tea? It’s no longer just a question of with or without sugar. Green tea is growing in popularity as are herbal infusions with customers looking to explore new tastes and sensations. Be sure to add some homemade cakes and pastries into the mix for a totally authentic experience.

Decor you can be proud of

Likewise you can make your cafe stand out with décor that is totally different from anything else that is out there. As an alternative to bland walls why not get some vintage prints of your local area and frame and hang them on the wall. They make a great talking point. Or alternatively, how about displaying local art work – taking a small commission for any sales you make.

Fairly lights trailed around the bar also add personality as does a hand-written menu on a blackboard which you can easily change around to display your specials.

Tableware

Brightly patterned cups and saucers can make your cafe stand out but they don’t all have to be the same. Mixing them up creates more of a homely feel. If you serve tea then perhaps you could display a collection of decorative teapots on a high shelf. How about your takeway cups? These offer a great opportunity to stand out from other cafes and you might want to consider branding, which may cost a little more, but advertises your cafe every time a customer takes one out.

Furniture

Chain cafes are probably the worse offenders when it comes to furniture since it all looks uniform and rather boring. Cafe chairs are a great way to add colour, and they don’t all have to be the same. Mixing and matching colour gives a great sense of warmth and personality, letting customers know that your cafe is owned by a single human being rather than a corporation.

Furniture arrangements

You can also attract interest by arranging your furniture at different angles rather than in straight rows or try mixing heights by using a combination of standard cafe tables with some dry bar tables in the window. Or if you have the space throw in a sofa or some tub chairs for lounging.

Eco-friendly

Finally with all the publicity relating to plastic straws and cups which affect the environment, perhaps it’s time to ditch these and try using paper straws and biodegradable cups. Don’t be shy to show that you’re embracing an eco-friendly ethos – stand tall and be proud.

3 Top Tips For Choosing Cafe Furniture

If you’re just starting up a new cafe or bistro then you’ll need to source furnishings to create a comfortable area for your customers to sit and enjoy themselves. Cafes typically require a mixture of tables, chairs, and bar stools but before rushing out to purchase these you need to do a little research to ensure that you make the right choice.

Naturally the first step is to make a floor plan so that you have in mind the number of tables, chairs and stools that you require. Your floor plan should make the best use of your space so that you can seart as many as people as possible while still leaving sufficient room between the tables. Once you’ve completed your floor plan you’re ready to start looking for your furniture.

Table sizes and shapes

Tables are one of your most important considerations since they take up the majority of your dining space. Moreover you need tables that are just big enough to suit the needs of your customers and no larger and this depends to some extent on the type of food that you’re serving. If for instance your menu consists mainly of snacks, then likely smaller tables will suffice. 600mm tables are always useful since they slot into tight corners and small recesses and these could be paired with a mixture of 700 or 800 mm tables. Rectangular tables are often a good choice because they can be pushed together to seat larger groups when necessary.

Mobility

It’s important that your cafe furniture can be moved around with ease to suit the needs of your business, so you don’t want to be buying anything that’s too heavy. On the other hand, your furniture needs to have enough weight to be sturdy and durable. It’s always wise to purchase commercial furniture since this has been designed especially for the hospitality industry. Another way of being sure that your furniture is suitable for a busy cafe is to buy furniture which has been AFRDI tested. You might also want to consider buying chairs which can be stacked as this allows you to clear the floor quicker and provides a convenient storage solution if space is limited.

Comfort is key

If a customer isn’t sitting comfortably then they’ll find themselves fidgeting and will be unlikely to return to your cafe again, no matter how delicious your food is. Wherever possible visit a cafe furniture showroom so you can try out the chairs and stools for yourself first. Although cushioned seats are likely to be more comfortable than wooden seats, this isn;t always the case if the cushions are lumpy.

Another consideration is the height of your chairs and stools. These need to be neither too high or too low, so have your table height in mind when choosing chairs and stools. The sales person in a furniture showroom should be able to advise you of the correct heights when purchasing chairs and stools.

At Cafe Furniture Brisbane we have an extensive range of cafe furniture including tables, chairs, and bar stools in a wide choice of materials, colours, shapes, and sizes. Better still, we currently have a massive end of financial year sale taking place, so if you’re quick, you could grab yourself a bargain.

Revisiting 2018 Style and Design Predictions

Can you believe we’re just a couple of weeks away from June and almost half way through the year. Where does time go? I started thinking about some of the style predictions that were being branded around at the early part of the year and thought I’d while away a little time refreshing my memory. I wonder are you using any of them in your cafe? If you want to spruce up your cafe or update a few design elements, it’s never too late. Who knows it could encourage more customers through your doors. So for anyone who missed them the first time round:

Here are the 2018 style and design predictions

 

Purple Power

Pantone’s chosen colour of the year was Ultra Violet. It was a bold choice and certainly not for everyone, but we interpreted it more as pops of purple or softer shades of lavender or even pretty plum. Recognised as a regal colour, purple could be used on a statement wall paired with lustrous metallics and florals for a look that is rich and inviting.

Floral prints

We’ve definitely noticed a rise in floral prints this year that have taken their inspiration from nature by incorporating flowers, leaves, butterflies, and birds. It’s a good choice for upholstered seats, curtains or blinds, even screens, and a great way of bringing the outdoors in. When it comes to floral prints, the bigger the better, so why not take advantage of the gorgeous wallpapers available within this theme and create a stunning statement wall in your cafe/bar.

Rounded softer shapes

2018 was predicted to be the year of plumper, softly rounded shapes, especially in furniture. The prime focus is on comfort and they’re designed for snuggling into. Think squishy sofas and tub chairs. These softer shapes and rounder silhouettes also lend themselves to a more casual, homely vibe – so perfect for lounging areas in in your cafe.

Sage

Sage was being branded as the new ‘neutral’. Although white and grey are still popular choices sage has more of an earthy feel to it. Reminiscent of nature and a step down from mint, sage is instantly relaxing while being a colourful decorative feature.

Dark wood

The Scandinavian trend of recent years has seen furniture manufacturers embracing the natural look of timber in a big way. While light wood will always hava a place, especially in modern design, this year has also seen the rise of darker tones of wood. Furniture fashioned from mahogany or walnut is the idealway to add a touch of retro glamour to your cafe interior while maintaining that modern luxury feel.

Ottomans – More Useful Than You Might Think

Casual seating is a prerequisite of most cafes and comes in all shapes and forms. You’ve probably considered bar stools but how about adding a few ottomans into the mix? Ottomans are great for small spaces and suitable for most ages – kids just love ’em! An ottoman is also a piece of furniture that adds interest as well as functionality.

How to use your ottoman

Ottomans are extremely versatile and whereas they may once have served as an item of furniture on which to suppport your legs and take the weight of them, they can also be used for casual dining purposes. We’ve put together a few suggestions for how you could utilise ottomans in your cafe, so let’s dive straight in and take a look:

  • If you’ve got sofas and/or tub chairs in your lounging areas, then chances are that you need a small table close by for customers to place down their drinks or plates of food. An ottoman makes a great side table and can be used in place of a low standing coffee table. Since our ottomans have padded tops you can simply place a tray on top to keep the surface flat and with their soft rounded corners, they’re also child friendly.

  • You might have managed to squeeze a small 600ml table into a tight corner or small alcove but what about a chair? Our ottomans make the perfect seating option in areas where space is limited. What’s more, when they’re out of use they can be sat beneath the table out of the way.

  • Continuing on from the point above, ottomans are perfect for those busy times of the day when there just aren’t enough seats to go around. Why not keep two or three ottomans tucked away beneath a counter or in a corridor so that you can quickly bring them out as additional seating for children or adults.

  • Our ottomans are stylish and colourful so why not use a few to add a pop of colour to a neutral palette. With a choice of black, burnt orange, or bright red they’ll fit into most decors and with a lovely padded vinyl seat, they’re also easy to keep clean and maintain.

Our ottomans work well both in traditonal and modern settings. The burnt orange ottomans look great with oak table tops to create a warm, cosy ambience. Or you could try pairing our black or red ottomans with glossy black table tops or crisp white table tops for a look that is classy and sophisticated.

As well as ottomans we also supply drum stools which serve a similar purpose. With these you can use the band of white around the middle to advertise your brand name and phone number, so your customers don’t forget whose cafe they’re sitting.

Small, portable, and extremely functional isn’t it time you embraced the concept of ottomans in your cafe?